Depression – We are Human BE-ings not human DO-ing
“I had an amazing spiritual teacher – depression”
We naturally fear the worst when it comes to matters we know nothing or very little, its quite normal, let’s take aliens for example, the dialogue I’ve heard the most usually goes something like this;
- They’ll want world domination, turn us into their slaves
- They’ll have no empathy as I imagine them more animal/reptile/lizard- like than human
- “I don’t even want to talk about it, the topic terrifies me”
- “I only have ‘V’ or the Sigourney Weaver films to base it on, so my frame of reference is negative”
Just like the ‘Aliens’ movies we only have what we have been taught about depression to go on – the sum of that can be written on the back of a postage stamp – fear and avoid -!
Often it begins in childhood with seemingly innocuous expressions such as ‘straighten your face nobody likes a misery-guts’ but by the time we are teenagers this threat of much dreaded unpopularity is ramped up quite a few notches to include warnings about heading for the local mental health facility and reminders of how Mrs such-a-body down the road was carted off by the men in white coats.
It’s natural for our parents or primary caregivers to want to rescue us from sadness, any parents worth their salt has their child’s happiness and contentment as their first consideration, but this can be done in a way that means we can receive the comfort and understanding we need during times of sadness and disappointment without said sadness and disappointment becoming first demonised and second, feared.
One simple example of this is to say to our children that we will hold them while they cry, but instead we hold them and tell them not to cry while searching for a distraction; a dummy (soother), a toy, a sweetie, a clip round the earhole.
Consequently, we emerge into adulthood afraid of what comes naturally and what is quite normal as sadness is an inherent part of life and disappointment happens from time to time, but because we are taught to fear and loathe these emotions we never get the opportunity to learn how to deal with them.
Sadness isn’t an illness and it also doesn’t equate to ‘mental’ health – our heads don’t hurt yearning for the life we want instead of the life we have, our hearts do, and our heads don’t hurt with the over-burdening of unresolved emotional pain and spiritual disconnect, our hearts do.
It could be quite reasonable asserted that it’s our parents unintentional and misguided lack of love that caused our fear of depression, therefore it stands to reason that, that same love can reverse it, permanently.
A good place to begin is to change the word ‘depression’ to ‘overwhelm’ firstly because that’s all depression is and secondly it immediately takes the bad out of it and even allows us to begin to feel the compassion for ourselves that is needed going forward, as more often than not we beat ourselves up for being depressed and look high and low for an escape route.
When we learn to simply be with whatever we are experiencing we grow as though by magic, but we do instead i.e. we attend healing sessions, buy self-help books, go to counselling, talk to a friend, sit in meditation etc, all with the sole purpose of finding a solution and feeling better, but what if there’s nothing wrong with how you are already feeling?
…and the most interesting and important question of all, what if you did nothing?
I woke up on the morning of one of my two-day, weekends retreat quite recently in overwhelm, my heart area felt leaden and it was though the big, black cloud over my head was so palpable I could reach out and touch it.
…but I did nothing and thought nothing (other than how excited I was, but I’ll get to that part shortly)
I had no desire to supress what I was feeling because I had a room full of excited and expectant students to teach, it was more a matter of there being nothing to supress because I wasn’t afraid of it, I knew it couldn’t hurt me, it wasn’t permeant and so it had no power.
I was also aware of what it really was; something old, that had remained trapped inside my physical self which was surfacing looking for acknowledgment love and acceptance, so I said hello gently and allowed it to be there.
I shared how I was feeling with my students later that day, explaining I had a choice, it could be a scary monster I want to avoid because I’m scared, or it could simply be there like the bottle of water on the table in front of me was ‘just there’.
One of the students then asked me if it was right to compare a feeling of desolation, deep sorrow and despair with a bottle of water in terms of it ‘just being there’.
My reply was ‘yes, it is’.
Simply because the emotion isn’t the problem, the problem is what we have been taught, trained even to think about the emotion and the modern twaddle that is associated with it, Big Pharma is big business so while we are quantifying sadness, measuring it in terms of ‘acute, clinical and chronic’ there’s enough money floating around to grease the wheels of the US economy.
There is nothing to be afraid of inside sadness, often it wants to stay around for minutes but it’s us, not it, that ensures it stays around for weeks when we endlessly tell ourselves and anybody else who will listen how dreadful we are feeling and when we focus on it constantly while looking for a solution.
The news gets better…
When it surfaces looking for love and compassion, its also wanting to move out, to be released and this is exactly what happens to that trapped, unresolved energy when we give it the acceptance it’s seeking, with each time we do this, we simply grow in happiness, peace and contentment and along with that flower’s confidence, discernment and wisdom.
Eventually your response to your feelings of extreme overwhelm will be the same as mine when I woke on the morning of the retreat, excitement!
This is because your will be innately aware that once the energy belonging to that emotion has been released you will be living in an even higher vibration of love, bliss and joy than you did previously, now when you live like that all the time anyway, that’s a very, very exciting prospect, proving that Soul, Universe, Divine has no upper limit on how joyous we can feel, it’s we that create such notions as ‘I can’t possibly be happier than I am right now’.
Please don’t worry if right now you are sat there thinking this all sounds a lot easier said than done, it simply means it’s not hurting enough, when it does you will surrender to the pain inside your heart and you will grow quickly and magnificently from that point, we all do, people whose destiny is to live a more soul-centred existence don’t get to fail to surrender, if you don’t do it yourself then Soul will create a set of people, circumstances, events and experiences in your life that will force you to surrender because everything you are seeking in this life, soul is seeking for you with far more passion, determination and intensely than you are seeking it.
Everything you want, need and dream of is on the other side of accepting that which you would normally avoid, fear and attempt to heal.